It's a real question, "Redeemed". Reformed Thought is that God chose the few-elect before the Creation:
Originally Posted by Redeemed by Grace
Eph4:1 "just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love
Eph 1:5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will"...
How does this fit with God's love? Does He love only a FEW, or does He love everyone? Those who perish --- did he love them and want them saved?
No, it's not. Does God have more than one will, sometimes conflicted? Consider:
I'll say it again, I see that God is not as man, thus He doesn't choose, He doesn't decide.... He wills; He purposes.... Within God's will, there are segments, as best as man can explain anyway.... There is His declarative will, and His secretive will. Hopefully self-explanatory.
Rom 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
Do you see THREE wills here, "good" and "accetable/permissive" and "peffect"? I see only one will, which is good AND acceptable AND perfect. Now, I see different kinds of a will --- I perceive that "thelema" is more akin to "desire" (John6:40, the will of God is that all who see Jesus and believe be saved), and "boulema" is more "decree" (God does not will/decree any to perish but patiently waits for all to repent). But they are never in conflict; God does not desire something opposite to what He decrees.
Okay, flat out --- is God "LOVE", to those who perish? Can you answer this "yes" or "no"?
I have not been arguing that God is not Love, for He is, what I have been challenging is the notion that He loves every man and woman equally....
It would go very far in helping me to understand your position, if you would cite the verses that you encountered on your journey.
Unfortunately, I can't help you understand anything... all I can do is to try and explain the wisdom I believe God has given me via study.
Then what was Jesus condemning in Matt11:21-24? Why would the current audience be judged harsher than the ancients?
As with Paul telling the Thessalonians, that they then need to examine everything and hold fast to that which is good. This is what I see.... That God is Love, and long-suffering, and patient, and kind, and merciful, and righteous, and holy, full of grace, and jealous, vengeful, and having wrath one day against all unrighteousness. That His will trumps man's. That He uses men to accomplish His will. That there is no plan B.
Okay --- but do you perceive that very love is limited? Is it available to every last person?
Personalizing this towards you, God loved you personally before you were born, purposely used the will of your mother and father for you to have your 1st birth, you then were born in sin, lived a time to the day you came to Him in faith using you own will, but His drawing you to the 2nd birth.... and that Love that He purposed for you is now realized by you with His Spirit with you today. Again, that's what I see as what happens, more or less.
No, you miss my point. God is love, and His greatest commandment is for men to love Him. What about men who perish --- they lvoed sin and not God. Why? Did He love them the same as those who receive eternal life, or not? If "not", then why not?
Originally Posted by Gadget
You keep apply God's instruct for man back to God Himself? Why do you do that? Not sure how old you are, but I have adult children, one being married... As I prayed for them to know Christ as their Savior, I am now praying for my future grandchildren, praying that they too would be saved if the Lord gives. You seem to think that I don't pray, or ask, or depend on the Lord... just to throw my hands up in the air and say... whatever. Not so... I have a calendar that I manage my work, I plan my events to do, and call upon the Lord for wisdom and understanding in faith and in life, probably just like you. But for me, I know that God is sovereign in all things, so I'm learning to stress less, learning to trust more, learning to be more dependent on Him than myself, know that that is His will.
That's quite different than "Reformed". Under "monergistic regeneration", a heart is changed before (apart from) belief, and then belief and love-for-God are irresistible. Your question is much closer to how I understand Scripture, not the Reformed view.
Originally Posted by Gadget
Unfortunately your question doesn't understand what I have been declaring... Chosen, forced.... nothing at all like that.... If a man marries a woman, do they withhold intimacy with each other or does their nature change?
I changed --- and that's the point. The love between a man and a woman is not "indwelt"; Christian salvation is. The Spirit regenerates the heart. If this is before belief, then the heart irresistibly loves God. But if regeneration is after belief, then "love" is a full and constant choice. Can you deny this?
The day you came to faith, did you stay the same or did you change?
I don't underand how you understand it. I think part of you is recognizing that "love cannot be ordained", and it's giving you some great conflicts. I wonder how you will resolve them?
If you changed, then you should now understand my answer. And not sure why you are afraid of God's will behind your will, for wouldn't it be better to have God influence your life than sin? [rhetorically asked]
All of that. And to embody Titus1:7-9 and 2:8-9; and 1Jn4:16-21.
Gadgeteer, I'm not sure what it is you desire, to teach, to correct, or to understand? But for me, I hope my goal is clear, to love the Lord with all my heart and to love others more than myself...
Clearly, _I_ have missed that with you at times, and it was never my intent; I apreciate that you're willing to still discourse, that I may learn better communication.
If you feel I have missed that with you...
We are here for His glory, and to love each other and fellowship together in Him. Towards that, we seek to be mature, to learn the uncomplicated doctrine of Christ, that we may be His healing to a lost and dying world. That we grow stronger together, and more equipped for His great harvest. All of that, and more.
then my apologies... but truly God is so Big, that we all sometimes miss why we are together on this earth for a season.
And to you.